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The Amish

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by

Carolin Becker

on 26 May 2014

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Transcript of The Amish

Way of life
Discussion
Contents
"Rumspringa"
History
Religious Practices
Population
Beliefs
Technology
The Amish
History
Religious Practices/Beliefs
Way of Life
-Physical appearance
-Technology
Language
Population
Health
Education/"Rumspringa"
Work
Outsiders
Physical appearance
Definition:
American protestant group who follows the teachings of Jakob Ammann, the first leader (-> "Amish" )

History:
Anabaptist movement in Switzerland in 1525 at the time of the Protestant Reformation

Amish were part of this movement until 1693

from then on they formed their own group

Mr. Ammann favored stronger church discipline

nowadays around 250.000 members
2 key concepts:
rejection of pride and arrogance
high value on humility and calmness

anti-individualist orientation
the community is at the heart of their life
community welfare
separation from modern world
strong family & social ties

large families are a blessing of God

produce many of their needs

80% work in businesses

wives are subordinate to their husbands

They keep themselves apart from the surrounding society in several ways...
wear distinctive clothes
don't serve in the military
usually don't vote
don't go to law
don't accept any state benefits or use insurances
have their own education system
marry among their community
believe in
-adult baptism,
-separation of church and state
-the importance of the community to faith

old fashioned life

living in a way that pleases God

breaking the rules-> you will be shunned

persisting in rule-breaking-> you will be excommunicated

reject sex outside of marriage, divorce & homosexuality & all forms of physical violence
Education
opportunity for the youth to taste the outside world and get involved in drugs, alcohol, sex etc.
90% do give up & join the church
past: most Amish were farmers

now: small shops, businesses, restaurants, carpentry...

hard-working people

keep simple life -> focus more time on family
Outsiders
to join the Amish, you have to
learn the dialect
accept the rules of the church
adapt the household
participate in daily activities
learn to leave behind modern luxuries
be voted in by the church

Some outsiders have become well accepted and respected members.
Work
own private education system
25 to 35 pupils in one school
one room & one teacher to cover all ages
teaching is in English
education until the age of 14
farm work before and after school
boys learn farming
girls learn domestic matters
avoid modern technology to keep their old traditions
transportation by horse and buggy
use horses instead of tractors
reject:
-electricity or telephones
-computers and television
-traveling by air
-the car
accept e.g.: chain saws & inline skates
permitted to use buses, boats or trains
most Amish settlements are located in central and eastern US
184 settlements (most in Ohio, Pennsylvania & Indiana)
fastest-growing population in the world
~ 7 children per family
characteristic outward symbol of membership
clothes should reflect humility & avoid individual distinctiveness
Women are not permitted to use make-up or to wear jewelry
Men do not wear mustaches and grow beards only after marriage
Language
3 languages:
German dialect called "Pennsylvania Dutch" at home
English with non-Amish
German for worship services
Health
closed community -> inbreeding -> genetic disorders i.e. mortality rate among children is high ("God's will")
cancer rate is low because of clean living, no tobacco, protective clothing
do not practice birth control
suicide rates are below average


no health insurance, but hospital programs to assist the Amish
Would you like to spend your vacation in an Amish community to taste the daily life without modern technology ? Do you think you could stand this life for 3 weeks ?

Is it reasonable to stick to an old fashioned life instead of adapting to modern technologies ? What advantages does an antiquated life have ?
Full transcript